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tv   Book Discussion on Lessons in Censorship  CSPAN  May 1, 2016 6:15am-7:46am EDT

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into a building but not written in the teacher's guide. in the rare is much discussion him and i should have limited him in him and the teachers powerpoint and most commonly to 45 seconds. it goes up to three minute then you get a very limited question section. how would you solve this equation or sometimes, what
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would you do if you are malcolm x. and you can two minutes to discuss with your friend, a guided discussion and then it's over and we are back to listening to the teacher. i've seen also numerous cases in this context, particularly when given are using calls her a chance to drop the immense attention. for example, there is space-bar to mr. that have to respond scholar or whatever it might be. so you can come kind of call and response. if you don't participate in response, even if you were sitting quiet way, not being disruptive, listening to the
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teacher, if you didn't respond to the chance, you will be reprimanded, usually with detention and after four times. outside this speech should not lead the debate that i just described to you, the rest of this school day of silence, including the hallways and most notably the lunchroom. speaking to the person next to you at lunch is a privilege that has to be earned and weeks can pass in which schools, kindergarten through 12th grade are required to have silent lunches. students march the hallways single file with one hand covering their mouth so the air in the her not to be. the use of one's voice, including whispering, laughing and again quite impressively citing, and this is considered to be a violation of school behavior code and is met with automatic unity respond.
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the reasoning behind this does is the reasonable belief that students must attend a strong level of academic performance in order to succeed in life in different domain including a citizen. also the less reasonable belief that it can only be achieved if they are monitored and limited to these extreme mix than. one cent in the book i want to read to you this shows the courts align with this view. this is in relation to the jesus case. they have read the court about violent learning environment to justify restrict civil liberties for schools are failing. so where we have lower performing schools, we have a stronger reasoning or suppose a
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justification to limit the students free speech rights and other rate. the village tyrants is a powerful metaphor for those who subvert or silent student teacher. as we see throughout this book, the tearing is expressed in their efforts to suppress speech, most notably by defining various speech acts as unacceptable or in the other he and useful speech required within the context of the school. i would encourage those of us who care about student speech rights to consider also this increasingly common practices which may be harder to address it to address it and are currently golf remark but nonetheless stand in the way the democratic education for citizenship and will clearly not be supported a learning liberty framework which we've heard about from professor ross.
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to be clear, i wholeheartedly agree that basic academic scheme and equal education and opportunity are essential to a functioning democracy for reasons i've not elaborate here. it is vital that we recognize that like reading or math, citizenship is learned by doing and the skills will not evolve as a side effect of maturity or of academic attainment. practicing the skills of being a citizen is essential for a democracy which aims to sustain a public sphere informed by key democratic principles, created and sustained in environments that support the gradual in sensual development of skills to require focus on protection of democratic school environments in which students free speech and other basic rights are properly bracket nice to celebrate it. thank you.
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[applause] >> thank you very much. you know, the cato institute depends on the first amendment in a lot of ways. it's part of our strategy. it's always part of the outsider status for an 80 or 95 and so on that really hadn't gained traction in some ways. we wanted to get people with dominant views to come here and debate us. the first amendment was essential to our idea of how it became part of the national conversation and we always want to make sure that the things we have in the cato position was enunciated and today professor ross ipad of inciting a despair that would be part of the cato advocates for the libertarian position on the spirit but we also do education here in the education axis.
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i want to include my colleague, director of the cato center for educational freedom prior to arriving at cato he served in the u.s. army, tight high school english and maybe he'll have some stories for us. was a freelance reporter covering government in education and suburban new jersey. before becoming the direct terror, he was policy analyst at the center for education reform. he's the author of sets in the classroom of big government cripples and compromises american education and his writings have appeared in all the recent publications. he has been on c-span before, cnn, fox and numerous programs. he holds an undergraduate degree from georgetown were a double majored in government and english, masters degree in political science from rutgers university and a phd in public
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policy from george mason. welcome. [applause] >> thank you all very much and especially professor ross, thank you for writing this post. due in education policy all the time that threats to basic rights in public schools is not a subject that gets nearly enough attention. all sorts of questions about what we teach, how we teach, how kids interact, and those have all been pushed aside session over test scores. everything is what is the test score, by the way, what are the test scores. these are topics we absolutely need to talk about. there may be some collusion between people who runs schools and the public transportation system of d.c. trying to keep people away from today's event by closing down conveniently the metro, but we will see. within the book, especially appreciate the discussion of dangerous federal overreach on
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the federal role in education, but especially the anti-bullying 2010 dear colleague letter that so many in the audience over there asked asked me before this event. i hope you can talk about dear colleague letters. it was particularly striking that it only mentioned the first amendment in a foot note in only one. it seems that ought to come up are often one would give directions for schools about how you deal with people speech. the first amendment should get one mentioning the foot now. thank you how one particularly huge objection on page 273 and i want to quote it exactly. conservative groups including the cato institute's, in your book you talk about fighting wars, which is the kind of speech that is not protected by the first amendment. cato's libertarian, not conservative and i think that falls under fighting words. we're not going to call the
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police in this case, but it's an important distinction. [inaudible] [laughter] >> fight a verdict. i think it is right that public school is a government entity are often way too inclined to curb basic expression. that's very clear in this book if you're not clear all but we also have to be clear about two things. these are concerns i have about the book. one, public schools are often as they think professor ben-porath talk about, they're often type of training places such or learning liberty by living. people tend to not look at schools that way which is by the topic doesn't come up that much. second, it concerns me the use of the term democracy. not just in your book, threat in
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the education discussion or debate. i'll get into more about why the use of the term is problematic. for the first point if you even agree to the advocates of public schooling is, they weren't all that interested in learning liberty by the demand of the new schools are primarily about. more about shaping people from above. benjamin rush is a well-known founding father. he was really an early advocate of widespread public schooling and he said you should create a public schooling system that would render the mass of the people more homogenous and thereby fit to more easily for uniform in peaceful government. they talked about teaching, inculcating common morals. it wasn't about people themselves talking about their differences. we will take an elite notion of what a proper citizen is to make people identical and we won't
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have problems when they're older. the man often called the father of the public schools are the common schools or godfather no matter what name you give him, he was the leading advocate for public schooling in the 1830s and 1840s and they talked about public schooling not bringing in diverse people to work out differences and talk about but making them sorted similar. people who held the same sort of belief views to defuse general intelligence than it was really about inculcating common morality and a common morality that you hoped was held by people up like him. we will go just to the progressive era turn of the 20th century is one more example. a very well known public schooling thinker and advocate and again, he and a lot of
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people like him don't necessarily see the schools is a place where you learn liberty. he said we should give up the hippocratic idea that all are equal in our society is divided. wage earner and wage earner. this does appear to be using i.q. tests to decide your future is in fact three and maybe for a small%, your future is in college. this wasn't really oriented towards our public schools are where we learn to be citizens to have equal rights with everyone else and we work out our differences ourselves. certainly some public schooling advocates did want that. he was much more in this mold if we have schools for kids who come together from different backgrounds and work on projects together and they would learn to live together, sort of a different view than the top-down notion that was more a driver of public schooling.
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the idea we should put people in a way to be uniform and again, the discussion of even those schools today has been fifth or sixth or seventh for 900 rarity makes to test scores, test scores, test scores come up with many cases would've reduced education being. just to talk a little bit about the term democracy and this comes up a lot and it's important how we use it. it's often used interchangeably to mean a lot of things to mean representative government, to be kind of a leveling of people. people can say it as synonymous with individual liberty. sometimes it means majority rule. often it is somewhat a public controller public role. this latter notion kind of drives a common belief when we get beyond the test scores at public schools could basically respond to whatever the
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community, usually whoever is represented by the school word and that leads to a fundamental clash about what the schools do. the individual rights versus community values. a lot of these people say education is about social reproduction. community says this is how it shapes to to be part of our community, our society and they have to share norms and values and not do things that concern us. he said that most clearly because no one forget hits for jesus so you remember that case. another law no one's ever heard of. the first law for public schools was called the old deleter act. in a court case people are remembering. in any event, ultimately there is a fundamental problem, especially the idea we should
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have some sort of public control is inherently conflictual. complex cannot be escaped and now i'm going to do sort of a shameless plug. not that shameless. would run something called the public schooling battleground. and never rely on my own ability to operate anything. the reason it's here is that supposed assertive illustrate how many conflicts we have. this doesn't include how you teach multiplication for what is the right day to start the school year, what hour to restart the school day. this is based conflicts that we have in schools. you have diverse people, but they are all supporting one
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system and we are trying to get the system to educate them all. one system can teach anything but everybody wants. he can be perceptive to look at it. a lot of those little pin berry other pins. if you pull out, it would look less intensive. what makes the courts and often into the media is not every conflict we have. probably the tip of the iceberg. the point here is to illustrate that we are caught selling having conflicts over all sorts of issues. the best illustration maybe if you think of library books. on page 101 of her fester ross' book, she notes schools choose to buy any book they want or not
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by any book they want. for whatever reason. but if you get into the removal of the book, you say a parent says i don't think this book is appropriate or i don't think they should be of much else regardless. that becomes a constitutional issue of this is government censorship if you remove it or you can see the problem should the government be able to favor speech for whatever reason don't want. it deems this book is worthy of having kids read it. this book over here is not worthy of being in the library. that is inherently conflictual. we have on the map to illustrate the incredible power of the map and user friendliness is these are all the books banning reading material conflicts. probably tip of the iceberg but there's about 220 of these over maybe 10 years. started in 2005, just things we
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see in the news and all out. is it just ultimately for those who would not choose to pay for the chocolate war. you may not have read it but that is what most challenged books. or what about people who say i don't think i should pay for it or my children should have to read the ventures of huckleberry finn. yes these are very valuable books to read. everybody knows creation versus evolution but inherently there's a problem that leads to an equality. it automatically feel like a second-class citizen. you might even say it's religious discrimination issue at creationism in checked in religion, which assert something we don't want government to do.
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so you can't treat all these equally. also, a couple more small critiques. i think the professor talked about this so i won't go into it too much. there is the argument for people in the classroom every day for saying that to have a lot of discipline, even very difficult to teach what you need to teach to run the classroom if you don't have that and even if someone is saying something perfectly legitimate viewpoint, you can't have 45 minutes to evolve into a debate about some day when you need to cover other material and of course you've always got to cover other materials. finally there's something about shared norms and beliefs. research by james coleman and others have shown private schools, especially religious schools may outperform public schools because everyone who goes to that school except the
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ones and values and create cohesion. you don't have to have rule by law and regulation and often in modeling through as you illustrate well in the book where we are not sure what to do. how do we decide what policy to have her how to treat the student when it will make some people angry and others won't like what they do if they don't punish the student. private schooling, you agree with the handbook says that enables older than much of a coherent and cohesively and it may be leads to better academic outcomes. i don't want to say i think this is planned research but there is some research to show this. given the inherent conflicts, the only way to truly treat people equally and protect them from government incursions, speechwriter, religious right, et cetera is ultimately attached
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money to students, not to specific schools and give educators freedom to start the kind of schools they want with the policies they want and let those people freely interact. somebody wants maximum expression can choose a school like that you can deduce that they want no excuses discipline, maybe not even speaking in the cafeteria kind of atmosphere, they can choose that as well. if you are not happy, if you say i chose a school that doesn't have a strict anti-bullying policy because i won't maximum freedom that my child is getting bullied to the point i can't tolerate, you can also leave that school. and away you are a captive audience. this gives you the ability to escape. if you could choose schools for any other number of reasons, not just these policies. so in that case, government died on speech rights to religious rights or anything else. aaron make those decisions and
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could even go elsewhere if they are unhappy. it's absolutely important to understand the threats to freedom of speech and other freedoms and how to minimize public's old give this book is a terrific job of talking about issues, diving and how to resolve them. i especially like the charred eye office. it's more important to move to a system and which does that can't be escaped by the people of the education system supposed to serve. thank you. [applause] >> meals, and about the distinction between conservatives and my old friend, walter burns book, freedom virtue of the first amendment, which was back to the 1950s. you might read it. you will not get the sense that it is a libertarian vote. it is indeed a different kind of approach to the first amendment
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that you can call conservatives. that said, it might be worth emphasizing that this moment of moscow's server disk and the liberals and indeed liberty libertarians was rightly decided, which is to say that they don't believe public figures should have had protection liable counts are frankly appalled to hear successful politicians otherwise. on that note, we shall go to work questions than answers. please raise your hand and wait to be called on. wait for the microphone so we can project this out to the world and announce your name and affiliation unless you think your reason to remain anonymous, which i don't think anyone really does. above all, please keep your comments in the form of a question as possible. this gentleman here.
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>> thank you. i am with american university. when i went to high school i went to a private catholic high school so the debates around free speech don't quite match the same that i was wondering if a personal experience i've had with censorship, honda with player to public schools. i was the editor of the school newspaper's op-ed section and i was planning on publishing an editorial opposing the administration's position on homosexuality and they demanded a review of the article before publishing it. and ultimately they took several months of the review in telling leftist school coincidentally. i suppose my question when it comes to school sponsors beach, is the administration has the ability to review what students want to use dns corners paper in a public school?
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>> absolutely in a public school they can say we are reviewing everything before it comes out. they can censor it by eliminating the article altogether, forcing you to rewrite it, take parts out in the case that created the doctrine was about a school newspaper that wanted to run actual news stories, not opinion pieces about teenage prank and see in the school and about the impact of divorce on student and the principle essentially got rid of two whole pages of news paper because he wanted to get rid of those two articles at the last minute in the court said that was okay but awaits further commented on in its hold is coming to you there it is is not a topic that was appropriate for a school sponsored newspaper or
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that the viewpoint was so provocative within the community's that as i said earlier, they could say they're going to censor because it's controversial, but too difficult for younger students to handle. they would find some pedagogical reason. for schools go wrong if they've got lazy. they often don't bother to come up with a reason. they just they can't publish it. but if they try they can usually come up with some thing. that is the sad news. i'm actually going at the end of this week to talk to the annual meeting of the columbia scholastic journalism as those the asian, which is a meeting of all the high school students around the publications and their advisors so i'll probably have a morse tories after the meeting. >> woman in the center in the back row.
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>> and sarah, also from american university. my question is while this does seem to be a general problem across united states committee think it should be addressed nationally or individual communities? >> that's a terrific question. as neil indicated, local control is an important part of our educational system. elected school boards, local superintended and as far as i'm able to grasp the newly crafted law that replaced no child left behind, the federal government is stepping back from giving the kind of guidance they been giving the last 10 years. but the constitutional law is federal law. so we really have to have an interplay between and understand and a first amendment law interpreted by federal court and
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what communities do on the round. one of the recommendations i made in my book is that just because the first amendment allows schools to engage in certain kinds of sense or should or to place certain innovations on student speech, doesn't school districts have to use those powers. one thing that people who believe in a model of education that emphasizes learning how to be citizen and active way might do is run for school board or go tell the school board we would like to be a community in which the school doesn't limit student speech that is in disruptive, even though you have the power to do that. we would like to send a different message in this environment. usually the people who talk up
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about speech in the local community are those who would like more censorship rather than less until there is an event. once there is a censorship in the name, quite understandably, principles and school boards tend to dig in their heels rather than weaken bitter policies. i suggest is a good conversation to have the has been canceled for some other issue has arisen. the mac other questions? down here to the right. both of these gentlemen. the mac by: nurse, washington d.c. i wonder if any of the courts that could hinder the possibility that educators would be doing while to solicit provocative speech rather than just allow it. >> i love that idea. but i've never seen. a course
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they appear to have you ever seen a principal say it? >> i have seen some that illustrators who profess to the courage -- to encourage controversial speech. there's a very interesting study that was published in a book called controversy in the classroom. the two authors actually show a set of cases in which classroom teachers are using controversial topics and controversial opinions as pedagogical vehicles were developed in capacity or for sometimes the writing, learning how to write for free speech and debate purposes but in the regular classroom as basically they show generally
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speaking this is a very large study over five years but thousands students that they later also followed up with after they graduated to see the extent to which they remain to citizen and they do show that one yuan urge and also model controversial speech in the classroom, for example, when you live in a community where most people, for example, are strong advocates of the second amendment and you come in, even if it's not your view as a teacher and a this is why we should have strict gun control regulation. or the opposite. basically your capacity to it her students to develop skills than all of these other
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capacities that allow you to be a good, active citizen i really strengthened by this. so you do see the distant teachers and demonstrators. i won't say this is the mainstream. >> yeah, i would just add that i think will send educators tend to avoid controversial issues quite apart from the first amendment question because often the school has a diverse community that it's working with and mayor just trying to avoid com like that might get them a hard time. there was work by two political science is they came out a few years ago now that they've been subsequent work that surveyed analogy teachers that found 60% of biology teachers soft-pedal evolution or don't teach it all mainly because they are trying
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to get to avoid getting anybody getting worried. it makes your life easier not to aggravate people. the >> teachers can also lose their jobs if parents get angry enough, even if they have tenure and if they stray from the viewpoint of the curricula at the school board has chosen, they could get into a lot of trouble. >> someone over there. >> some years ago i worked for the michigan state legislature network on a bill to protect the right of public school students in publishing newspapers. there are plenty of sources to write her student besides the u.s. constitution. each state has its own constitution and each state can pass statewide loss. i would like to know, how does
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that happen? as state courts relied to protect student rights? have state statute? >> terrific question. yes, a number of states have enacted higher protection for student betrayed them currently found in the federal talk turned from the court. california basically says the material disruption standard applies to every kind of student speech in k-12 regardless of the supreme court precedent and they also a few years ago passed a law protecting advisors to high school publication going back to your question about your op-ed piece as adviser in california fights to protect the rights of the student journalist. the statute says they can't be discharged for that. and there's a number of organizations that are actively work in to try to get worse
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dates to pass or protect the laws for student journalists. a number of state came close to doing it, but experienced vetoes from governors. one case involves student in a suburb of chicago in a very good high school within his paper who discovered the staff of the school district had gone on junket and a dugout to travel receipts and showed they stayed for days in the hotels in the meeting went on and things like that and they weren't allowed to publish it in the school news paper, but the "chicago tribune" found it and all of the standards for journalist investigation and published it and after that, the legislature passed a student right statute to cover student journalists and the governor vetoed it. pretty shameful.
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but that is another place going back to the local or national problem. it is both. >> showmen right here. 's >> thank you. leibler asking this question to my capacity as a high school basketball coach. i've been following the case progressing now. a football coach in the state of washington who over the course of his career had at the end of games on to the center of the field prayed by himself, which apparent need to raise the problem. some of the kids on the team said coach, what are you doing question arc i am praying. can we join you? of course it's a free country. whatever they say that, that is always wrong of course. so as more and more people joined him for the prayer, he
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then was suspended and i think that case is ongoing. i wonder whether any of your research touches on that issue. it only became a problem when the student came voluntarily to pray with him. >> yes, the last chapter of my book focuses in large part on religious expression based dude in that one of the problems in this area is that next to the doctrine governing speech which many throw up their hands and say this is too confusing for me. i don't know how to use it, which they do preside over antitrust and other very difficult cases. they try to make it clearer. next to that, the condition of the establishment clause is an enormous disarray because the supreme court has basically not
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relied on insert old set of top during and hasn't really replaced it with anything else. individual justices have approaches that the lower court don't have much guidance. so teachers and principals are used about what amount to an establishment clause violation, how does this relate to free speech or students. they too often they that if students express religious views like prayed over the sandwich i brought from home, not even to get other students to join in, that the school be accused of an establishment clause violation for allowing us to take place. that is clearly not true. students have the right to praise correspondent or not disrupting class. and to express through speech their religious viewpoints to each other.
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the problem is when you have a teacher in urging people, then we have a question about his participation really voluntary? the law is clear they should be for the students themselves. if a group of students say we've noticed the coach has been praying in the middle of the field and we would like to do that, too, do they do it separately? do they join the coach? when the coach that team members whose lives have pretty much in charge of a lot of the time and am a very authority figure to you, if you want to join me, that is a closer question. certain if he said we are going to do this as a team, that is perfect. the >> supplement of the center, a couple or and then we have to wrap.
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>> jacob marks, american university. if a teacher is hospitalized due at two in santana high school and is assaulted in the process and she posts on facebook but she ends up in the hospital gets fired because of it, is that violated her first amendment right question or >> i'm sorry, teacher? >> the teacher was assaulted and then at school was hospitalized because of it. while in the hospital she posts it on social media that she was in a hospital. can she be fired for that? >> the law will be different where she was. appellate courts are not in higher lien agreement. but there are some limited to a public employees, including
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teachers can say about their work. so a lot would depend on whether this is said or did not her public terror or not. hypothetically, you know, if she were attacked by a student or by the school principal, that probably to me would seem like a matter of public third. but if you listen a mouse, she probably could be. it's hard to say without knowing more and where this took place. he backed the gentleman right here will have to be our last question. >> dr. mccluskey, to your point, it's in this issue more about not free expression, but property rights? isn't public property the original sin of this whole debate were feuded a public poverty, the government wouldn't be in the position to be in arbiter of speech.
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>> i've never put it that way and i'm not an expert on property law or anything like that. i do think that is certainly a root problem if the government were providing the schools, most of these issues would go away. a lot of arguments provide schools that she could serve to have. what is important is we do need to look somewhat below the conflicts themselves and say what may be causing us to have these conflicts. reality is i hope we move to school choice. we are moving to school choice. and that means private schools because even charter schools understand public schools. but always made great progress, we are nowhere near most people going to private schools, so these are real issues that have to be dealt with until we can
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reach the ideal where everybody is going to a private school because then you and the educators essentially agree on what the rules are going to be a nice the best way to balance lots of eating goods where people put different values on different things, but also where some things can't coexist together. you can't have a school that is both nonreligious and that teaches religious stop during which a lot of people want. in terms of whether or not it's a public poverty issue, at least i've never framed it that way. >> when professor ross and i met in january when she was on a panel here, one point she sent out by the first amendment i disagree with a lot of things cato advocates. of course i was perplexed because having all of the answers i am always kind of perplexed when people disagree with me.
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but there is the point here that's important. we don't disagree about the importance of the first amendment despite the fact we disagree about any public policy issues. i think that is an important thing to remember and a context like this when there's lots of polarization, lots of partisanship and lots of seemingly entrapped both conflicts. it's people across parties and across ideologies remain committed in unified to a strong first amendment connection. i think this book, how schools of course subvert students first amendment right is an important contribution to building the committee and making us appreciate the port of the end. i would like to think her face or ross for coming today. professor ben-porath for coming on a potentially difficult day to be with us here and a colleague for it. on the panel. most of


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